How Good Was The Year (in music) - 2014?

HGWTY moves one year closer to the current day than we’ve ever been before, as the dial stopped spinning at 2014.

A reminder of the premise of the thread

Rate the music of the year out of ten, based on the albums, singles, gigs, whatever that stand out for you that year. Non-musical nostalgia is welcome in the thread but that’s beside the point of the poll.

Everyone may nominate one album and one song from the year which will then be collated into side-polls on the final day of the thread (in one week) - please make it clear when you post a nomination for the poll, e.g

Rank Year Rating Top Album Top Song
1 1997 8.60 Radiohead - OK Computer The Beta Band - Dry The Rain
2 1967 8.48 Love - Forever Changes Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood - Some Velvet Morning
3 2013 8.29 Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - Push the Sky Away Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - Jubilee Street
4 2004 8.10 Madvillain - Madvillainy / Arcade Fire - Funeral The Walkmen - The Rat
5 1976 7.47 David Bowie - Station to Station Bob Dylan - Hurricane
6 1986 7.42 Talk Talk - The Colour of Spring New Order - Bizarre Love Triangle
7 2009 7.10 Fever Ray - Fever Ray Animal Collective - My Girls
8 1974 6.95 Neil Young - On The Beach Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson - The Bottle
9 1985 6.62 Tom Waits - Rain Dogs Prince and the Revolution - Raspberry Beret

In case you’ve forgotten, 2014 was the year Russia invaded Crimea and annexed it from Ukraine, Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 went down somewhere in the Indian Ocean, Scotland voted marginally to remain part of the UK and Luis Suarez was banned for biting an opponent at the World Cup in Brazil.

We said goodbye to Philip Seymour Hoffman, Shirley Temple, Robin Williams, Peaches Geldof, Rik Mayall, Maya Angelou, Lauren Bacall and Richard Attenborough.

How good was the music?

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0 voters

Poll will be open until evening of Tuesday 1st March, album and song polls will go up evening of Sunday 27th based on your nominations to that point.

Some lists for inspiration:

Albums Lists

Drowned in Sound's 50 Favourite Albums of 2014 / In Depth // Drowned In Sound
The 50 Best Albums of 2014 | Pitchfork
The best albums of 2014 | Music | The Guardian
NME's Top 50 Albums Of 2014
Best Albums of 2014 : Best Ever Albums

Songs Lists

Drowned In Sound's 40 Favourite Songs of 2014 / In Depth // Drowned In Sound
The 100 Best Tracks of 2014 | Pitchfork

Nominated Albums

Nominated Songs

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Best debut record of the year hands down:



Bit of a blind spot for me, this year. Wasn’t really up on new releases or anything for a few reasons (wedding stuff, work etc). Although…




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Being in London for the lead up to Syro was awesome.


Here we go! Thanks for deciding what I’m listening to this week.

This is a year I recall having 3 albums duke it out for #1. Will have to revisit each.

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Ty Segall’s Manipulator was one of them and in heavy rotation. You’d think a 55-minute album in this genre would drag a bit, but this didn’t (for me).


I didn’t hear it until about 2017 initially, but seeing him rip through the entire album in London a couple of years ago was a joy

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Best Primavera year we have been to is basically my main memory of 2014. Oh and Neutral Milk Hotel at Albert Hall and that DARKSIDE tour


This was an incredible festival

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Don’t post or vote in these threads, but 2014 was amazing for music.

Liars, Sharon Van Etten, Silver Mt Zion, Cleft, Eagulls, Hamilton Leithauser, Angel Olson, Sun Kil Moon, Let’s Wrestle, Mogwai, Warpaint, Inventions, East India Youth, Gilla Band, Adult Jazz, Twilight Sad, Kiasmos, Alex G, Alvvays, Joanna Gruesome, Ought and a whole load more.

Incredible festival lineup, a lot of it courtesy of that ATP festival going over


In my top three shows of all time


It really was. Got an absolutely stinking cold from Angel Olsen/Grouper at BARTS on the Sunday. Fucking hell forgot The Twilight Sad set had in my head that was 2013 christ what a weekend, John Talabot, Jamie xx and Rodiah MacDonald at the Teatre Principal on the Wednesday was a great vibe got absolutely hammered.

Looking back through my calendar for 2014 seems a bit ridiculous I had Wild Beasts at the Albert Hall and then the next night DARKSIDE at the Ritz. Prince at the MEN and the day after Neutral Milk Hotel at Albert Hall. What the fuck was going on.

More later, but a very weird year. One of the deepest years for pretty good albums but overall kind of underwhelming?

Album Nomination: The Afghan Whigs - Do to the Beast

Somehow they made a perfect comeback album despite missing their guitarist who had a signature sound.

Cheating and posting these two songs together because they’re inseparable and would have been a best of decade candidate had they not been split in two.

Song Nomination: The Hotelier - Dendron

I’m assuming / hoping someone else is going to pick the album so I’m going to go with them for my song nomination. One of the all-time great album closers. It’s perfect.


I’d only dipped into Liars a bit at this point but really loved Mess and went out and bought it. Only a couple of months later did I think to check their tour dates and discovered I’d just missed them in Dublin. ffsssss.



Meant to check this album out at the time because I liked the album title but never got round to it. Only heard it a year or two ago and it wasn’t at all what I thought they sounded like (I’d assumed a more orchestral Godspeed or something). Love it.

It’s a good album (the previous one was naff).

Doesn’t hit the heights of 13 blues or Born into trouble but still some nice bits.

(Their first album is pretty much what you suggested they’d sound like)